Can you imagine the public outcry that would be heard if it were suddenly brought into question whether parents could legally be in charge of feeding their own children unless at least one parent became a certified, registered dietitian? What if, in order to prepare your children's food in your own home it was mandatory to be under the ongoing supervision of a credentialed, registered dietitian?
How do you think the general public would feel about their state assuming that since one family didn't adequately feed their children (as determined by the courts) now all families must receive training and certification as dietitians and cooks, or else bring their children to state-funded nutrition centers for all of the meals for their minor children? Because, obviously, parents can't be trusted. They're not qualified. The feeding of children is too important an issue. We can't leave dietary decisions and menu implementation to amateurs! Even amateurs who love these children with their very lives and are doing everything they can to educate themselves and feed them properly. Parents either must receive the necessary qualification and certification to cook for and feed their own children, or let the proper professionals handle it. In fact, it should be the law.
This sounds a bit absurd in the realm of nutrition, but this is exactly what's happening in the realm of education. The underlying assumption is that parents simply can't be trusted to educate their own children.
This week's California Court of Appeal decision is found here. If you haven't already, I encourage you to go read it. The language is clear. It's not just about this one family. The decision is now on the path to become a legal precedent for other cases. I don't think it's alarmist at all to listen to James Dobson's radio broadcast for today and consider seriously what is discussed. It's not paranoid to join HSLDA or at least your state's support group. It's not irrational to go here and sign this petition on behalf of thousands of homeschoolers in California. You never know when your family might benefit from the work that's being done on behalf of the rights of parents. Parents who happen to want to nourish the minds of their children themselves... through homeschooling.
**Edited to add: This is not just a homeschool issue! Al Mohler has a great post about this on his blog here. Dr. Mohler states, "This is a controversy that demands the attention of all parents. After all, if parents have no constitutional right to educate their own children, what other aspects of the parent's choices for their own children lack protection? This question reaches far beyond educational decisions."